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A hypothesis-based approach to landscape change in Suðoroy, Faroe Islands

Edwards, KJ; Borthwick, D; Cook, GT; Dugmore, AJ; Mairs, K-A; Church, MJ; Simpson, IA; Adderley, WP


KJ Edwards

D Borthwick

GT Cook

AJ Dugmore

K-A Mairs

IA Simpson

WP Adderley


Hovsdalur, an area delimited by the great cirques of upland central Su uroy, draining into the valley of the Hovs´a and terminating in the east at the coastal amphitheatre of Hovsfjørdur, is a microcosm of the Faroes. The area contains the physical and economic features which characterize the greater part of the island group—mountain, valley, and coast, and marine, cultivation, and grazing environments. Data comprising mainly geomorphological,palynological, and pedological evidence, covering the period prior to and subsequent to the initial Norse settlement (landnam), are used to test a series of hypotheses which exemplify the human ecology of the area. Not all the hypotheses, or aspects of them, proved acceptable—the Norse period clearly coincided with a number of vegetational and pedological changes, but this must be set partly against a backdrop of long-term geomorphological activity.


Edwards, K., Borthwick, D., Cook, G., Dugmore, A., Mairs, K., Church, M., …Adderley, W. (2005). A hypothesis-based approach to landscape change in Suðoroy, Faroe Islands. Human Ecology, 33(5), 621-650.

Journal Article Type Article
Publication Date Oct 1, 2005
Deposit Date Dec 2, 2008
Journal Human Ecology
Print ISSN 0300-7839
Electronic ISSN 1572-9915
Publisher Springer
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 33
Issue 5
Pages 621-650
Keywords Faroe Islands, Palaeoenvironments, Hypothesis-testing, Norse.
Publisher URL